“And then I realized that adventure was the best way to learn.”
From time to time we save up enough pennies to take our mini men on an adventure. When we get these opportunities, I would like to share it with you all. Traveling is an amazing thing, a great adventure. I hope to inspire you to save your pennies too…
Climbing aboard the airplane, we knew that our family was embarking on a life changing adventure. This spring break we detoured from the haven of resort filled beaches. As a couple we love the road less traveled rather than the tourist mainstream, it was time for our children to experience just what we have been talking about. The destination was Guanacaste Costa Rica.
We wanted our boys, Monkey and Mojo, to grow in their admiration for the world around them. Not just looking at nature, but to touch and interact with it. Armed with cameras and travel journals they were ready to document an expedition that they would never forget.
We all picked different activities that were close to our hearts to venture out on. Seeing that all three of my men are adrenaline rush junkies they picked Bunea Vista for its white water rafting down insane rivers, zip lining through a lush rainforest, and the thrill of a natural water slide.
I agreed to it because I knew the end of the two day trip would include a horseback ride through a beautiful landscape, volcanic mud baths, and relaxing hot springs to lounge in.
For my activity pick I chose the Palo Verde National Park which was known for experiencing wildlife. Before delivering us to our boat to glide down the Tempique River, our van stopped suddenly. The driver asked us to get out while drawing our attention to the trees. Looking up we saw rainbows flying through the sky. Red macaw parrots were cruising from tree to tree in a tiny grove. Seeing the amazement in my boy’s eyes I knew that their minds began to open to a new way of thinking. The day carried on with sightings of
and lots of Capuchin Monkeys. Knowing the routine of the boats the wild Capuchin monkeys ran to the trees lining the banks of the murky river. The boat paused. With nimble thuds we heard their feet land as they jumped onto the roof of the boat.
Cautioning us to be still, our guide cut fruit, placing it in the palms of our mini men, and the Capuchin monkeys came to indulge.
Spending time with the locals we learned so much more than we ever would have from books.
Rice fields were being planted in what looked like a dried out fields. Apparently during the rainy season these fields will flood, ruining any other crop that would be planted. In a village we were welcomed into a man’s home where he crushed his own pigments that he used on the Chorotega pottery. He throws each pot and sells them to large gift shops. The majority of the people’s homes did not have the luxury of modern day conveniences that we were used to. What they did have was pride filled smiles as they showed off their dwellings.
During the flight home I read both of my mini men’s journals. Of course they loved the adventure of rafting and zip-lining, but what they mentioned most was how different Costa Rica was from home. They connected the dots between us being able to visit the zoo; however the animals were far from their home. Another thing noted was how differently the families lived, how much less they had, yet they were happy. Once home it was obvious the boys were transformed. They went through their toy closet and donated several items, saying less is more – we still have our smiles!
~ Amy Elizabeth
Thank you SO much for reading. I hope you enjoyed our trip as much as we did. I do have a question for you. If you could take your family ANYWHERE on a vacation, where would you go?